Six Feet Under-The Complete Second Season (2001)

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Released 12-Jul-2004

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Main Menu Introduction
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Synopsis
Audio Commentary-In The Game, Back To The Garden, The Secret
Audio Commentary-I'll Take You, The Last Time
Notes-Series Index
Featurette-Anatomy Of A Working Stiff - Life As A Dead Body
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2001
Running Time 724:54 (Case: 780)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Multi Disc Set (5)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4,5 Directed By Miguel Arteta
Daniel Attias
Alan Ball
Kathy Bates
Studio
Distributor

Warner Home Video
Starring Peter Krause
Michael C. Hall
Frances Conroy
Lauren Ambrose
Rachel Griffiths
Freddy Rodríguez
Mathew St. Patrick
Jeremy Sisto
Richard Jenkins
Lili Taylor
Joanna Cassidy
Robert Foxworth
Justina Machado
Case ?
RPI $74.95 Music Steven Cahill
Richard Marvin
Thomas Newman


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
French
Dutch
Arabic
Finnish
Icelandic
Norwegian
Polish
Swedish
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     Having waxed lyrical in reviewing Series One, it seems pointless to revisit the same territory. Suffice it to say that this is television of the very highest order. Fans of the first series will not be disappointed here, and the transfer is of a quality that reflects the calibre of the show. Very very highly recommended.

     DISC ONE - EPISODES 1 - 2:

     Episode One - In The Game- Written by Alan Ball, Directed by Rodrigo Garcia (57:28)
     When a young actress dies, the cast in her latest slasher movie agrees to pitch in (more or less) for a cheap funeral at Fisher & Sons. As David gets both good and bad news from a trip to the doctor, Nat's MRI tests reveal he has an Arterio-Venous Malformation (AVM), a condition that might, or might not, be fatal. Acting on advice she read in a book, targeted to parents of gay and lesbian children, Ruth invites Nate, David and Claire - and their significant others - to join her and Nikolai for dinner. The meal is illuminating, at least for Nate.
     Episode Two - Out, Out Brief Candle - Written by Laurence Andries, Directed by Kathy Bates (56:57)
     A college football player collapses in the heat of practice, and his death haunts Nate and his AVM secret. With Matt Gilardi failing to buy out the "resilient" Fishers, Kroehner's regional director, Mitzi Huntley, decides to take matters into her own hands. Federico asks Nate and David for a down-payment loan for his house, but learns they're buying a "casket wall" display instead. Desperate, his wife Vanessa turns to her sister, Angelica, for help. Brenda invites the man who deflowered her over to dinner; Claire learns that Gabe is carrying some serious excess baggage; Keith frets that his drug-troubled sister Karla is neglecting her daughter, Taylor, and Robbie, Ruth's flower-store co-worker, asks Ruth to witness his graduation from a self-help seminar.

     DISC TWO - EPISODES 3 - 5:

      Episode Three - The Plan - Written by Kate Robin, Directed by Rose Troche (56:35)
     The husband of a psychic dies, making for some interesting conversations around Fisher & Sons. At Robbie's urging, Ruth enrols in "The Plan," a marathon self-actualisation seminar, and is changed. Claire is angry that Gary, her high school guidance counselor (sic), has betrayed her confidences about Gabe; she later turns to Keith when Gabe's personality becomes increasingly unstable. Having passed his funeral-director exam, Nate joins his brother for his first LA Independent Funeral Directors' lunch. Deciding to take a few courses at college, Brenda ends up walking out of a biogenetics class after dissing the teacher.
       Episode Four - Driving Mr Mossback - Written by Rick Cleveland, Directed by Michael Cuesta (57:39)
      In order to retrieve the body of a dead Seattle man who feared flying, Nate goes back to his old home, bringing Claire along. They stay with Lisa, a co-op member and vegetarian who still carries a torch for Nate. Back in LA, David jumps at the chance to take care of Taylor while Keith is at work. Brenda joins her mother Margaret in an effort to catch her husband having an affair, and later gets carried away with Scott, an impossibly cute man she met at a bar. And Ruth attempts to "draft her own blueprint" for happiness by reconnecting with former friends.
     Episode Five - The Invisible Woman - Written by Bruce Eric Kaplan, Directed by Jeremy Podeswa (55:30)
     Ruth takes a singular interest in the death of a single woman with no friends or relatives. Brenda, in search of a literary muse, turns to one of her massage clients, a prostitute named Melissa. David's promising relationship with Ben Cooper, a public defender, is thrown for a loop when Keith arrives for comfort, albeit briefly. Claire is disgusted with her friend Parker for getting another girl to take her SATs, and is intrigued when Gary admits there's a "sexual tension" between them. And Nate's relationship with Brenda takes an unexpected turn.

DISC THREE - EPISODES 6 - 8:

     Episode Six - In Place of Anger - Written by Christian Taylor, Directed by Michael Engler (55:18)
     A comparison-shopping widow brings a feisty Mitzi Huntley back into Nate and David's lives, with yet another offer from Kroehner. Ruth's estranged sister Sarah arrives for an unexpected visit that proves cathartic for both of them, as well as the budding artist in Claire. Thanks to Nikolai's influence, a vodka-fuelled family dinner casts a shadow on some happy news from Nate and Brenda. Federico and Vanessa find their marriage frayed by a house in serious need of expensive repair, and David's unabated desire for Keith hinders him from committing to a new beau.
     Episode Seven - Back To The Garden - Written by Jill Soloway, Directed by Dan Attias (56:15)
     A Jewish funeral at Fisher & Sons leads Nate to seek spiritual guidance from an intense female rabbi. Visiting her Aunt Sarah, Claire is surprised to meet an intriguing boy her own age amidst Sarah's hard-partying "artist" friends. Brenda's prostitute pal Melissa inspires some unusual fantasies. Keith warms up to David after a medical emergency involving his niece Taylor. Ruth invites Robbie to dinner to spare herself another lonely evening, but his chatter renews her appreciation for the beauty of a silent home. Federico's suspicions about his cousin Ramon's intentions toward Vanessa prove remarkably misguided.
     Episode Eight - It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year - Written by Scott Buck, Directed by Alan Taylor (54:10)
     Christmas signals the one year anniversary of Nathaniel's death, and gets everyone thinking about their last moments with him. Brenda's book research nearly turns her fantasy world into a reality. Nate and Brenda are shocked by Margaret Chenoweth's very special guest for Christmas Eve. Ruth's Christmas dinner brings David closer to Keith; meanwhile Nikolai is stuck on Ruth's couch for a long convalescence with 2 broken legs. Claire's taste for bad boys drives her away from a well-meaning new boyfriend, and into an online relationship with a dangerous man from her past - Federico stirs up conflict in his family when he reveals the truth about Ramon. Nate receives a gift from a biker's widow that might just help him live his own life to the fullest.

DISC FOUR - EPISODES 9 - 11:

     Episode Nine - Someone Else's Eyes - Written by Alan Ball, Directed by Michael Cuesta (56:12)
     Nikolai proves to be a terrible patient, and Ruth's limits are tested when she uncovers the truth behind his injuries. Brenda's escapades may be helping her write, but her feelings about being engaged grow more muddled - especially after Billy's release from the hospital. David is happy to get closer to Keith, even as Keith is increasingly troubled by his sister's recurring drug habit and its impact on Taylor. Nate gets some news from ex-flame Lisa that adds to his growing doubts about marriage. Claire can't seem to escape Billy's influence, artistic or otherwise.
     Episode Ten - The Secret - Written by Bruce Eric Kaplan, Directed by Alan Poul (56:41)
     Although David is mending fences with Keith, it becomes apparent that their relationship still needs some ironing out - and Karla's got a secret that isn't going to make the going any smoother. Claire takes a questionable approach to her new photography hobby, and grapples with a future beyond high school. Ruth is ready to move things along with Nikolai, but he might be happy right where he is. Brenda's engagement anxiety leads her and Melissa on a sexual adventure in unlikely Orange County. Nate assesses his past and opens up to Lisa, but her reaction is far from hospitable.
     Episode Eleven - The Liar And The Whore - Written by Rick Cleveland, Directed by Miguel Artela (49:24)
     Nate and Brenda seek advice from Rabbi Ari, who leads them to a more honest place in their relationship. Ruth's need to control the lives of Nikolai and Claire help her realize (sic) that she may be the one who needs assistance. When Federico gets suspicious about an elderly woman's "natural" death, he inadvertently places Vanessa under scrutiny. A disgruntled former client files a lawsuit against Fisher & Sons, masterminded by an old friend over at Kroehner's.

DISC FIVE - EPISODES 12 - 13:    

     Episode Twelve - I'll Take You - Written by Jill Soloway, Directed by Michael Engler (55:40)
     Claire seems to be finding direction in her life, and a newly serious Billy may help her along the way. The death of an elderly friend of Federico's gets him thinking about his start in the funeral business. Ruth finally understands Nikolai's true feelings about their relationship, and tensions between Nate and Brenda come to a head when the truth comes out about Brenda's clandestine activities. David's new life with Keith seems to be coming together, when Keith has a run-in on the job that may threaten everything they've worked for.
     Episode Thirteen - The Last Time - Written by Kate Robin, Directed by Alan Ball (59:05)
     Fisher & Sons is the subject of an unannounced inspection and the outcome proves surprisingly beneficial for Federico. Ruth wakes up to the reality of her relationship with Nikolai and quits her job at the flower shop, while Claire's art-school interview turns out differently than she'd hoped. Things between Keith and David grow tense in the wake of Keith's career woes. Brenda attempts to deal with her true nature, making her future with Nate even more of a question mark. When Nate decides the time has finally come to take action regarding his AVM, Ruth, David and Claire discover a family intimacy they never knew they had.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1.

     The transfer is equally high quality as its predecessor. Clean, sharp, crisp and perfectly rendered. Most satisfactory.

     The colours never disappoint either. Skin tones are excellent, and all is as it should be.

     There were no video artefacts in evidence at all.

     The subtitles were accurate, clean and easy to read.

     The discs are dual layered but there are no mid-program layer changes to distract one's eye or attention.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     This is a presentation in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround with Dolby Digital 2.0 audio commentary tracks.

     Dialogue was perfectly audible and there were no audio sync problems.

     The music in Six Feet Under is one of its particularly strong suits, and everything is perfection in this second series.

     The big surprise in this series was how much stronger the surround sound and subwoofer activity were compared to Series One. A superb soundscape to enjoy.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

      The extras are somewhat pared down from the plethora offered in the first series, but they're generally meaningful and interesting.

Menu

     Equally stylish as Series One, the menu is easily navigated.

DISC ONE:

Commentary Track by Rodrigo Garcia, Director of Episode One.

Series Index

     Effectively, the list of titles of each episode.

DISC TWO:

Series Index

DISC THREE:

Commentary Track by Dan Attias, Director of Episode Seven.

Series Index

DISC FOUR:

Commentary Track by Alan Poul, Director of Episode Ten.

DISC FIVE:

Commentary Track by Jill Soloway, writer of Episode Twelve.

Commentary Track by Alan Ball, director of Episode Thirteen

Featurette: Anatomy of a Working Stiff - Life As A Dead Body

     (19:51) A fascinating insight into the real and manufactured bodies the Fishers work on.

Series Index

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     It appears the two versions are identical.

Summary

     Wicked, insightful and frequently dangerous television, this series is equally as satisfying as Series One.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Mirella Roche-Parker (read my bio)
Tuesday, August 31, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDSinger SGD-001, using S-Video output
DisplayTeac 76cm Widescreen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationTeac 5.1 integrated system
SpeakersTeac 5.1 integrated system

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Great review -
re: great review -
4 disc or 5 disc set - REPLY POSTED
number of discs - Brent R (bio-zet is especially formulated for front loading machines)
Widescreen - Andrew500 (read my bio, at your leisure)
Season 2 not filmed in widescreen - Jace